Original New International Commentary on the New Testament Volumes Now Available

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Today’s guest post is by Bethany Olsen, from the Logos Bible Software marketing team.

If you, like myself, have been loving the New International Commentary but have asked yourself “Where are the original NICNT volumes?” I’ve got some great news for you! These long-awaited volumes, containing critical works from a multitude of noted theologians and biblical scholars, are now available on Pre-Pub at Logos.

Published by Eerdmans, these ten original commentaries are timeless, holding the writings of Norval Geldenhuys, Merrill C. Tenney, John Murray, Philip Edgcumbe Hughes, and others . For decades, the writings of these gifted theologians have influenced those in the academic arena, behind the pulpit, and in homes around the world with their superior biblical scholarship and stirring content. Each volume of the New International Commentary series is brimming with scriptural insight, making these resources essential tools for all hoping to dive into serious Bible study.

But those aren’t the only reasons to get excited about these newly offered commentaries—here are a few more:

  • These original NICNT volumes are landmark commentaries, highly significant at the time of their release and still considered to be pillars of New Testament study.
  • The highly academic yet accessible writing, verse-by-verse commentary, literary analysis, historical background, and information regarding authorship contained within these works is detailed and comprehensive.
  • These hard-to-find volumes are now easily accessible in your Logos collection, giving you all the benefits of owning commentaries in a rich digital format.

So, wonder no more about the availability of these original New International Commentary New Testament volumes. Join Logos as we rejoice over this fantastic addition to our digital offerings.

New volumes available for individual pre-order:

Read Max Lucado’s New Book at FreeBookPreview.com!

Out Live Your LifeWe are so excited to announce that from September 19–24 Max Lucado’s brand new book Outlive Your Life will be featured at FreeBookPreview.com! That’s right, during the week of September 19th you will be able to examine Outlive Your Life completely free.

Max Lucado, the pastor of Oak Hills Church in San Antonio, TX, is the author of over fifty books with 80 million copies in print. In 2005, Reader’s Digest named Lucado “The Best Preacher in America.” Max’s books, profound in their simplicity to communicate God’s powerful love; have appeared on every major national bestseller list including The New York Times, Publishers Weekly, USA Today, Evangelical Christian Publishers Association, and Christian Booksellers Association.

In Outlive Your Life, Max uses Acts 12 to consider how a few passionate nobodies can turn the world upside down with an outrageous love and an even more outrageous gospel. Can God use us to have an impact here that outlives us? The answer is a resounding “Yes!”

[Read more…]

The Eighth Annual Logos Bake-Off

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Today’s guest post is by Jenny Bajema, from the Logos Bible Software electronic text development team.

The eighth annual Logos bake-off was held on August 26th, 2010. The theme this year was “fruit” and we had some creative entries such as Nanaimo bars with coconut and “Honey on a Date” cookies. There were also tasty cheesecakes, yummy crisps, and berries galore!

I had the honor of co-coordinating the event with my fellow book designer Jani Westermann. Both of us have a love for fruity desserts and healthy competition, so we naturally had to enter our recipes as well.

During the week leading up to the bake-off, I was perfecting my raspberry cream cheese whoopie pies and decided to use my friend as a taste-tester. When I told her about the competition, she got really excited.

“You mean, your company does bake-offs?!” Her eyes opened wide, wanting to hear more.

“Yeah, and we do cook-offs too,” I said smiling, indulging in a moment of pride.

My friend went on to tell me that in the 10 years she’s worked at her job, they have never once held a “fun” company event. When the topic of the bake-off came up in conversations with other friends and family, most had a similar reaction and story. I quickly realized how blessed I am to work in a company who enjoys working together, playing together, and cooking together. At Logos, I’m known for who I am, not just the books I work on.

The top three recipes in this year’s event included Jani Westermann with her White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake, Bethany Olsen with her amazing Nanaimo Bars, and Svetlana Bulanov who made a delicious Strawberry Kiev Cake!

Even though my whoopie pies got second-to-last place, I thought the bake-off was a great success! Because of events like these, I feel better-connected to employees in other departments and even more proud to work at Logos.

The word is getting out—Logos is a fun place to work! Why not check out our jobs page for current opportunities? Maybe next year it could be you taking home the bake-off gold!

It’s Time for a Barnes Raising

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Today’s guest blogger is Thomas Black, a Logos Forum MVP and a Pastor in Moweaqua, Illinois.

A barn raising used to bring an entire community together to accomplish, in just one or two days, something that would have taken a single family an unreasonable amount of time. Once the equipment and materials were laid out in stacks, the community would swarm in, labor hard and at the end of the day walk away from a finished barn. It is a marvel of community participation.

Logos Bible Software consists of a community of users which is really visible in the forums. One doesn’t have to look too far in the forum to find a series of discussions regarding one of the one of the longest lived (if not the longest lived) Community Pricing titles: Barnes’ Notes on the Old and New Testaments (14 Vols.). A work this size would require a massive amount of effort.

What is Community Pricing?

In a nutshell Community Pricing allows you to select the maximum price you would be willing to pay for a Logos book(s) if it were produced. Everyone else get’s to do the same. Logos calculates the numbers in the background to produce the book for the lowest cost possible to the users. That means that even if you’re willing to pay $45 for a book and enough bidders join in—you could end up paying much less than $45, but you will never pay more than your maximum bid.

Initially it seems a little complicated process from the user’s perspective, but there’s some fancy calculations going on in the background. Remember with Community pricing, you may pay less but you won’t pay more than you bid. Feel free to read much more about Community pricing here:

Back to Barnes

As stated, Barnes Notes has been on the Community Pricing page for quite some time. There are seasons where it charges forward and seasons where it appears to be standing still. I am not Barnes fan-boy so I thought I’d gather some notes on the question, “Why should I bid on Barnes?” Besides the fact that you’ll never get a book as cheap as you can on Community Pricing since the price goes up once it goes into production.

The Value of Barnes Notes

Even I can see the value of having such a massive set of work in Logos. Recently forum members, weighed in with a quote from Charles Spurgeon regarding the value of Barnes.

“Albert Barnes,” say you, “what do you think of Albert Barnes?” Albert Barnes is a learned and able divine, but his productions are unequal in value, the gospels are of comparatively little worth, but his other comments are extremely useful for Sunday-school teachers and persons with a narrow range of reading, endowed with enough good sense to discriminate between good and evil. If a controversial eye had been turned upon Barnes’ Notes years ago, and his inaccuracies shown up by some unsparing hand, he would never have had the popularity which at one time set rival publishers advertising him in every direction. His Old Testament volumes are to be greatly commended as learned and laborious, and the epistles are useful as a valuable collection of the various opinions of learned men. Placed by the side of the great masters, Barnes is a lesser light, but taking his work for what it is and professes to be, no minister can afford to be without it, and this is no small praise for works which were only intended for Sunday-school teachers.
Spurgeon in Lectures to My Students Vol. 4, p30.

You can readily see the strengths and weaknesses of the set according to Charles Spurgeon.

Albert Barnes wrote not for scholars but for the common man, as such his works are more personal. In terms of scholarship, Albert Barnes may be “dated”, as some accuse him of being, and yet that does not negate the value of his observations and applications of the text. The resources he had available to him may pale in comparison to our day, and yet other works of equal age are still consulted for their breadth or depth.

With the current lead in pricing being $30 on the Community Pricing Bid, that brings the cost per page of Barnes to less than 1 hundredth of a cent! Such a price is indeed phenomenal for the scope of material available.

As I mentioned earlier, I have solicited answers to the question, “Why should I bid for Barnes?” Here are a few of the answers from the benefits of a Logos version to the style of his content.

I have this set in hardcopy and pull it out fairly regularly, but the problem is that my copy has the smallest font imaginable. I have to use a magnifying glass to read some of it. Therefore, I would love to replace it with Logos simply so I could enlarge the font in order to read it!Sharon

“I like his devotional thoughts. He also has a reasonable amount of helpful application to 19th century life – and by default to ours” Floyd

“If I’m quickly trying to study something I go to Calvin, Poole and Barnes to see what they say. Barnes just has a way of saying it that makes it feel more like I’m having a conversation with a pastor instead of having a theologian tell me what they think.” Scott

Here are a few more of the discussions taking place in the forums about Barnes Notes:

Add your own thoughts below. Oh, and don’t forget to place your bid for Barnes.

Learning to Think Critically with Primary Sources

Prolegomena
Today’s guest post is by Elliot Ritzema, from the Logos Bible Software Design & Editorial team.

When I saw a few months ago that Julius Wellhausen’s Prolegomena to the History of Israel was on pre-pub, I got excited. This is a book that I would love to see in Logos format. Lately it seems that the book has stalled in the “gathering interest” phase, so I’m hoping to revive progress by explaining why I think this book is so important.

When I took a class on biblical hermeneutics in seminary, we didn’t use a textbook. Instead, we studied the history of biblical interpretation over the last 150 years or so by reading primary sources (OK, in some cases they were English translations of primary sources). First we looked at Source Criticism, and the first reading was a selection from Prolegomena to the History of Israel.

Wellhausen’s name may not be familiar to everyone, but you can’t go very far in studying the recent history of biblical interpretation before you start to see his name or the initials “JEDP.” These initials come from Wellhausen’s version of the “documentary hypothesis,” in which he attempted to chop up the first six books of the Bible based on the argument that they came from four different sources. He wasn’t the only biblical scholar who did this, but his way of doing it became the most influential.

Now, you may like or dislike Wellhausen’s way of looking at the Bible (I certainly don’t agree with everything Wellhausen said), but it’s undeniable that he has had a huge impact on biblical studies. His name comes up over and over in all sorts of books, whether they are reference books or books that argue about his influence. He is mentioned in the Anchor Yale Bible Dictionary 241 times, the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia 192 times, The New Bible Dictionary 51 times, and The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church 31 times. Issue 25 of the journal Semeia is devoted to him and the Prolegomena. The Fundamentals, written in part to counter his influence, mentions him 47 times and a chapter in David Breese’s Seven Men Who Rule the World from the Grave (part of the Moody History Makers Collection) is devoted to critiquing Wellhausen and his way of understanding the Bible.

If you can read about Wellhausen in other books, then why should you buy his Prolegomena to the History of Israel? Well, if you are like me, you like to read primary sources. It isn’t enough for me to read a short treatment of an author’s ideas in a textbook; I like to have access to what the author actually wrote so that I can see it in context and quote from the original if I need to. Textbooks are certainly useful to get an overview of a subject, but there’s no substitute for reading each author for myself. That way, I’m not just taking someone else’s word for it; I’m learning how to think critically on my own. The great benefit of my hermeneutics class was that it taught me how to recognize different schools of biblical interpretation and evaluate their strengths and weaknesses. I don’t think I would have learned nearly as much if we had not read primary sources. Reading Wellhausen is not for everyone, but for those (like me) who are interested in the history of biblical interpretation, he’s a must-read.

Before I go, let me put in one more plug: The week after we talked about Wellhausen and Source Criticism in class, we moved on to Form Criticism and read part of Hermann Gunkel’s book The Legends of Genesis—which is also on Pre-Pub as part of the Classic Commentaries and Studies on Genesis.

See What’s Happening on the New Product Page

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Today’s guest post is by Robert Campbell, from the Logos Bible Software marketing team.

As a bibliophile, I couldn’t ask for a more suitable job than working for Logos. I’m surrounded by books, I get to write about books, and I talk about books for 90% of my day (the other 10% is divided between HTML and coffee). I get to be a part of a process which makes Christian books easily accessible to a large number of people, and that’s pretty cool.

One of the things I do at Logos is making books, books you’ve asked for, available for individual download. If you haven’t visited the New Products page lately, you haven’t seen the hundreds of books we’ve listed after breaking up collections. While purchasing collections gets you a better deal, more books for the buck, sometimes individual titles out of those collections are what you really need.

As the number of books Logos offers grows, so does their diversity and range:

In the last few days, we have posted systematic theologies, scholarly commentaries, pastoral helps. Books on biblical archeology, astronomy in the Bible, church history, and much, much more. If you are a book lover like me, you’ll find it’s a book lover’s dream. So check out the New Products page, and check it often—we are constantly adding resources!

The Gospel in Action: Fortress Press Creative Pastoral Care and Counseling Series

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Today’s guest post is by Sarah Wilson, from the Logos Bible Software marketing team.

Are you a pastor? A counselor? Or maybe you have a friend or family member going through a rough season of life, such as depression, death of a loved one, abuse, or serious illness. Knowing what to say or how to respond to those in need is a difficult yet necessary undertaking. The gospel of Jesus offers comfort and encouragement for hard times, and we are proud to present Fortress Press Creative Pastoral Care and Counseling Series (19 Vols.) as an incredible resource for those involved in ministerial care or counseling.

Although there are many fantastic Christian counseling resources available, this 19-volume collection is especially useful, giving you invaluable tools and guidance from pastors, psychologists, therapists, counselors, and other experienced caregivers. This massive source of counseling advice covers a myriad of concerns, such as how to care for the sick, the dying, marginalized people-groups, as well as those suffering from depression, abuse, and those in crisis.

Some of these titles include:

  • Cross-Cultural Counseling, Aart M. van Beek

  • Creating a Healthier Church: Family Systems Theory, Leadership, and Congregational Life, by Ronald W. Richardson
  • Short-Term Spiritual Guidance, by Duane R. Bidwell
  • Counseling Adolescent Girls, Patricia H. Davis
  • Crisis Counseling: Revised Edition, by Howard W. Stone
  • Integrative Family Therapy, by David C. Olsen
  • And many more!

A thoroughly practical resource, Fortress Press Creative Pastoral Care and Counseling Series contains outlines, discussions, and considerations on many methods of counseling and therapy perfect for pastors and counselors. The interaction between psychology and biblical doctrine is brought together in these titles, providing solid direction for the relational and counseling situations you find yourself in.

If you work with people on any level, this is an essential tool for you to learn how to minister to those around you in biblical and compassionate ways.

Logos Bible Software: A Washington’s Best Workplaces Finalist

Washinton's Best Workplaces 2010Not many people can say they work for one of the best workplaces in their state, but the 200 or so Logos Bible Software employees can say that very thing.

After an extensive and rigorous process, which included the completion of surveys by nominee-company employees across the state, Logos has been recognized as a finalist for Puget Sound Business Journal’s Washington’s Best Workplaces. To celebrate this accomplishment, companies that were identified as Washington’s best, based on various employee benefit offerings, leadership culture, and work/life balance philosophies were invited to a special awards event at Safeco Field, home of Major League Baseball’s Seattle Mariners.

When asked about this recognition, here is what Bob Pritchett, President/CEO of Logos, had to say:

“I consider it a blessing to get to work with so many wonderful people at Logos Bible Software, and am glad to see our team recognized. Hopefully this will lead even more great people to join us!”

Bob generously offered to cover the costs for all employees and their spouses who wanted to attend. Once a final head-count was set, he announced that two limousines were set to take us down to Seattle for the event. [Thanks Bob!]

Once we entered the ballpark, we were greeted by Puget Sound Business Journal‘s staff and ushered toward tables and tables of food, drinks, and concession snacks. After all, we were at a baseball park! You can be sure we had our share of peanuts and crackerjacks, hotdogs, soda, popcorn, and so much more.

Awards were presented to finalists in the small, medium, large, extra large, and non-profit categories, with special recognition— including a custom Mariners jersey—going to the #1 company in each of the five categories. Although Logos was not selected as the top workplace in our category (large), it was a huge honor to be recognized amongst so many great companies who are doing great things for their employees.

Making the evening even better was the opportunity before and after the awards presentation for attendees to go onto the field to throw baseballs while being clocked for speed and to “walk the bases.” But when presented with the opportunity to go onto a Major League baseball diamond, would you just walk, or would you run? Run!

Here is a short video of Adam Navarrete, from our marketing department doing just that.

Now doesn’t that look fun? Why not check out our jobs page for current opportunities? Maybe next year that could be you!

Standing on the Shoulders of Giants with Donald Bloesch

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Today’s guest post is by Kyle Anderson, from the Logos Bible Software electronic text development team.

My Mom is in a book club. During the discussion of their current book, questions were raised about John Calvin and specific points of his theology. After a bit of hemming and hawing, my Mom offered to send an email to her son—the closest person any of them knew to being a theology expert—asking for some background on Calvin. More than that, they wanted to know what Calvin thought about God.

Intuitively they knew that throughout history there have been giants of theology. These are people who have had the uncanny gift of deeply reflecting about God’s nature and communicating it a way that strikes a chord in both the Church and the greater world. People like Augustine, Anselm, Aquinas, Luther, Calvin, Wesley, Edwards, and Barth.

Penetrating the depths of their thought helps us dig deeper into the unfathomable vast riches of God. Spending time with these people lets us stand on the shoulders of giants and scan the horizons of who we understand God to be.

Of course, the question is, how do we begin probing the minds of these thinkers? The best way is to jump right in and explore. My theology professor in college reminded us often that the best way to understand Karl Barth was to actually read Karl Barth. But we all need a little help. And I present to you Donald Bloesch’s Christian Foundation Collection.

In this 7-volume collection Bloesch traverses the standard topics of systematic theology but does so with a keen eye on both the biblical witness and centuries of Christian thought. As a reader you’re presented with various summary positions and quotations from representative thinkers. Pick up Donald Bloesch’s Christian Foundation Collection and begin to immerse yourself in the Church’s great thoughts and thinkers.

Update: We just learned that Donald Bloesch passed away on August 24, 2010. Here are a couple of nice obituaries:

A Coffee Table Book on Bible Study!?

Bible Study magazine

Today’s guest post is from John Barry, Editor-in-Chief of Bible Study Magazine.

Why I Love Coffee Table Books

I used to walk into old bookstores and see a Michelangelo or El Greco book and have to have it. It started with old cheap books, but it quickly got out of control. Before I knew it, Barnes and Noble and Borders had me. I was walking out with expensive books about Da Vinci. Then Amazon.com got me with sweet folios of art pieces by people like William Blake. There was something soothing about having coffee with a brightly colored book that combined text and art—two great mediums together. The combining of mediums is also what I love about magazines, hence the need for Bible Study Magazine 2008–2009. But with this book, you get art and writing focused on God’s Word. It’s an extraordinary conversational piece for your living room.

Why My Grandfather-in-Law Loves Coffee Table Books

I’m not the only one who loves big books. I recently took my grandfather-in-law into Barnes and Noble. He left with a big book on military planes, and almost bought one on trains. He loves coffee-table books for the same reason I do: They take everything we love about a subject, condense it, and throw it in a blender with art. So I asked my grandfather-in-law, “What do you think about a coffee table book about Bible study?” He got a big smirk on his face and said, “That would be perfect. Can I buy one here?” The answer was no, because to my knowledge Bible Study Magazine 2008–2009 is the only coffee table book solely about Bible study, and it’s not in Barnes and Noble.

You Will Love This Coffee Table Book

This compilation presents the wealth of an entire year’s worth of Bible studies, do-it-yourself guides, tips, and interviews with trusted pastors and teachers of Scripture. It includes book reviews, ideas for devotions, word studies, biblical humor, and archaeological and historical insights. Plus, Bible Study Magazine 2008–2009 contains the sold-out, highly requested January–February 2009 issue, featuring an interview with Kay Arthur. Other people interviewed include Josh McDowell, Mark Driscoll, Randy Alcorn, Lee Strobel, John Piper, John MacArthur, and more. Bible Study Magazine 2008–2009 is perfect for display as well as for study and examination of God’s Word. Order it today by clicking here!